Feature

Will Annie Leibovitz's lose her life's work?

Why the "genius" photographer may be "close to financial ruin"

Annie Leibovitz may be a "victim" of "her own relentless artistic ambition," said Luis Torres de la Llosa in Agence France-Presse. The 59-year-old "genius" photographer, known for her "legendary perfectionism and the pouring of resources into lavish sets," is "close to financial ruin" because of her "disastrous decision" to take "a 24-million-dollar loan from Art Capital Group (ACG)—in effect a high-end pawn broker—in December 2008 using her own photographs as collateral." Now the loan is due on Sept. 8, and if Leibovitz "can't pay up, she could lose her life's work."

"Leibovitz's troubles are being raised to the status of American morality tale by a culture obsessed with money and how to keep it, especially now," said Medb Ruane in the Irish Independent. But it's hard to know if Leibovitz is just "a great artist who can't deal with the everyday," or "a careless dreamer," or "just plain greedy." It does seem that "the morass she faces isn't all a result of profligacy but of unexpected inattention to detail."

It's hard to believe that someone as rich, famous, and successful as Leibovitz could be "brought down to the level of every other American in today's financial crisis," said James Horner in Examiner.com. But she has "a strong network of powerful friends and an even stronger work ethic," so it's likely that she'll "get out of this financial mess."

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